A top Iranian cleric on Wednesday said that US President Barack Obama was put in office by "the Zionists," and that his election would not result in better relations between America and the Islamic Republic.
In remarks carried by Iran's Fars News Agency, cleric Hojjatoleslam Ali Maboudi, an official representative of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khameini, asserted that "the Zionists brought Obama to power to help America pass through its current challenges."
"America's relationship will not change because of Obama taking office," Maboudi added.
Earlier in the week, Obama offered Iran a "hand of peace" if Tehran will "unclench its fist."
During his election campaign, Obama repeatedly declared that his softer, more diplomatic approach would thaw relations with Iran and other hostile regimes.